United States Department of Agriculture - Rural Housing Service
09/11/17 5:00 PM local time for paper copies; and 5:00 PM EDT for electronic submissions
Grants and loans to USA nonprofit organizations, government agencies, farmers, farmers associations, and family farm corporations to provide farmworkers with off-farm housing and related facilities. Funding is available to construct, improve, repair, and purchase housing units for domestic farm laborers.
The Rural Housing Service (RHS) announces Section 514 Farm Labor Housing (FLH) loans and Section 516 FLH grants for the construction of new off-farm FLH units and related facilities for domestic farm laborers and for the purchase and substantial rehabilitation of an existing non-FLH property. The intended purpose of these loans and grants is to increase the number of available housing units for domestic farm laborers.
The Agency will assign additional points to pre-applications for projects based in or serving census tracts with poverty rates greater than or equal to 20 percent over the last 30 years. This emphasis will support Rural Development’s mission of improving the quality of life for rural Americans and commitment to directing resources to those who most need them.
This program provides affordable financing to develop housing for year-round and migrant or seasonal domestic farm laborers. Housing may be constructed in urban or rural areas, as long as there is a demonstrated need.
Funding may also be available for related activities including:
-Buying and improve land
-Purchasing household furnishings
-Paying construction loan interest
Who may live in rental housing:
-Domestic farm laborers, including those working on fish and oyster farms and on-farm processing (1)
-Retired and/or disabled farm laborers
-Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident
-Very-low- to moderate-income households (2)
-Low interest loans
-Grants based on need and may not exceed 90% of project cost
-Up to 33 year payback period
-1% fixed rate
-An allocation of loan funds is also available for on-farm labor housing and is funded on a first-come, first-served basis
Rental Assistance (RA) and operating assistance will be available for new construction in FY 2017. Operating assistance is explained at 7 CFR 3560.574 and may be used in lieu of tenant-specific RA in off-FLH projects that serve migrant farm workers as defined in 7 CFR 3560.11, that are financed under Section 514 or Section 516 (h) of the Housing Act of 1949, as amended (42 U.S.C. 1484 and 1486(h) respectively), and otherwise meet the requirements of 7 CFR 3560.574.
GrantWatch ID#: 145423
Individual requests may not exceed $3 million (total loan and grant).
No State may receive more than 30 percent of available FLH funding available in FY 2017.
This program assists qualified applicants that cannot obtain commercial credit on terms that will allow them to charge rents that are affordable to low-income tenants. Borrowers must have sufficient qualifications and experience to develop and operate the project.
Qualified applicants include:
-Farmers, associations of farmers and family farm corporations
-Associations of farmworkers and nonprofit organizations*
-Most State and local governmental entities*
*Eligible to apply for grants and loans
Housing Eligibility: Housing that is constructed with FLH loans and/or grants must meet Rural Development’s design and construction standards contained in 7 CFR part 1924, subparts A and C. Once constructed, off-farm FLH must be managed in accordance with 7 CFR part 3560. In addition, off- farm FLH must be operated on a non- profit basis and tenancy must be open to all qualified domestic farm laborers, regardless at which farm they work. Section 514(f)(3) of the Housing Act of 1949, as amended (42 U.S.C. 1484(f)(3)) defines domestic farm laborers to include any person regardless of the person’s source of employment, who receives a substantial portion of his or her income from the primary production of agricultural or aqua cultural commodities in the unprocessed or processed stage, and also includes the person’s family.
Tenant Eligibility: Tenant eligibility is limited to persons who meet the definition of a ‘‘disabled domestic farm laborer,’’ or a ‘‘domestic farm laborer,’’ or ‘‘retired domestic farm laborer,’’ as defined in 7 CFR 3560.11. Farm workers who are admitted to this country on a temporary basis under the Temporary Agricultural Workers (H–2A Visa) program are not eligible to occupy Sections 514/516 off-farm FLH.
(a) To be eligible to receive a Section 516 grant for off-farm FLH, the applicant must be a broad-based nonprofit organization, including community and faith-based organizations, a nonprofit organization of farm workers, a Federally recognized Indian tribe, an agency or political subdivision of a State or local Government, or a public agency (such as a housing authority). The applicant must be able to contribute at least one-tenth of the TDC from non- Rural Development resources which can include leveraged funds.
(b) To be eligible to receive a Section 514 loan for off-farm FLH, the applicant must be a broad-based nonprofit organization, including community and faith-based organizations, a nonprofit organization of farm workers, a Federally recognized Indian tribe, an agency or political subdivision of a State or local Government, a public agency (such as a housing authority), or a limited partnership which has a non- profit entity as its general partner, and
(i) Be unable to provide the necessary housing from its own resources;
(ii) Except for State or local public agencies and Indian tribes, be unable to obtain similar credit elsewhere at rates that would allow for rents within the payment ability of eligible residents.
(iii) Broad-based nonprofit organizations must have a membership that reflects a variety of interests in the area where the housing will be located.
The following requirements apply to loans and grants made in response to this Notice:
(a) 7 CFR part 1901, subpart E, regarding equal opportunity requirements;
(b) For grants only, 2 CFR parts 200 and 400, which establishes the uniform administrative and audit requirements for grants and cooperative agreements to State and local Governments and to nonprofit organizations;
(c) 7 CFR part 1901, subpart F, regarding historical and archaeological properties;
(d) 7 CFR part 1970, regarding environmental review and documentation requirements;
(e) 7 CFR part 3560, subpart L, regarding the loan and grant authorities of the off-farm FLH program;
(f) 7 CFR part 1924, subpart A, regarding planning and performing construction and other development;
(g) 7 CFR part 1924, subpart C, regarding the planning and performing of site development work;
(h) For construction financed with a Section 516 grant, the provisions of the Davis-Bacon Act (40 U.S.C. 276(a)- 276(a)-5) and implementing regulations published at 29 CFR parts 1, 3, and 5;
(i) All other requirements contained in 7 CFR part 3560, regarding the Sections 514/516 off-farm FLH programs; and
(j) Please note that grant applicants must obtain a Dun and Bradstreet Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number and maintain registration in the Central Contractor Registration (CCR) prior to submitting a pre-application pursuant to 2 CFR 25.200(b). In addition, an entity applicant must maintain registration in the CCR database at all times during which it has an active Federal award or an application or plan under consideration by the Agency. Similarly, all recipients of Federal financial assistance are required to report information about first-tier sub-awards and executive compensation in accordance with 2 CFR part 170. So long as an entity applicant does not have an exception under 2 CFR 170.110(b), the applicant must have the necessary processes and systems in place to comply with the reporting requirements should the applicant receive funding. See 2 CFR 170.200(b).
Section 516 grants for off-farm FLH may not exceed 90 percent of the TDC.
If there are insufficient applications from around the country to exhaust Sections 514 and 516 funds available, the Agency may then exceed the 30 percent cap per State. Section 516 off-farm FLH grants may not exceed 90 percent of the total development cost (TDC) of the housing as defined in 7 CFR 3560.11.
If leveraged funds are going to be used and are in the form of tax credits, the applicant must include in its pre-application written evidence that a tax credit application has been submitted and accepted by the Housing Finance Agency (HFA). All applications that will receive any leveraged funds must have firm commitments in place within 12 months of the issuance of a ‘‘Notice of Pre-application Review Action,’’ Handbook Letter 106 (3560). Applicants without written evidence that a tax credit application has been submitted and accepted by the HFA must certify in writing they will apply for tax credits to the HFA and obtain a firm commitment within 12 months of the issuance of a ‘‘Notice of Pre-application Review Action.’’
A two-phase application process starts with pre-applications accepted on an annual basis through a Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) in the Federal Register. Selected pre-applications are invited to submit final applications
Applicants are encouraged, but not required, to submit the pre-application form. Pre-applications will only be accepted through the date and time listed in this Notice.
Applicants wishing to submit an application in response to this Notice must contact the Rural Development State Office serving the State of the proposed off-FLH project in order to receive further information and copies of the application package.
The application deadline is September 11, 2017 (5:00 PM local time for paper copies and 5:00 PM EDT for electronic submissions).
In order to maximize the use of the limited supply of FLH funds, if it is financially feasible the program may contact eligible NOSA responses selected for an award in point score order starting with the higher scores, with proposals to modify the transaction’s proportions of grants and loan funds. In addition, if funds remain after the highest scoring eligible NOSA responses are selected for awards, program staff may contact those eligible responses not selected for awards, in point score order starting with the highest scores, to ascertain whether those respondents will accept those remaining funds.
Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.
Contact your RD State office:
For further information, contact:
Mirna Reyes-Bible, Finance and Loan Analyst
(202) 720-1753 (this is not a toll free number.)
Multi-Family Housing Preservation and Direct Loan Division
USDA Rural Development
STOP 0781 (Room 1263-S)
1400 Independence Avenue SW.
Washington, DC 20250-078
10.405 / 10.427
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